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The children’s curriculum at New Windsor (May 2010)

Last Updated (Sunday, 11 March 2018 19:36)

New Windsor School (Auckland) has decided that - in the spirit of the rights of children to information and to have a say on matters affecting them (UNCRoC 12,13) - students from year 1 up should be explicitly introduced to the vision, principles, values and key competencies outlined in The New Zealand Curriculum.


‘Educated at Auckland Girls, Equipped for the World’ (May 2010)

Last Updated (Tuesday, 30 November 1999 12:00)

In reviewing its Charter and developing its school curriculum in line with The New Zealand Curriculum for 2010, Auckland Girls' Grammar School has settled on ‘global citizenship' as a key integrating theme. Unsurprisingly, as the first school partner in Human Rights in Education, the school has grounded the rights and responsibilities of citizenship in human rights: ‘Auckland Girls' Grammar is a rights respecting school.  All areas of school life are conducted with respect to the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. All members of our school community have the responsibility to ensure that one another's rights are respected.'

Much of the work of supporting and guiding the school on human rights and responsibilities is in the hands of students:

· A Human Rights Prefects' Committee

· The Student Council, which ‘strengthens student voice, promotes student initiatives, and implements Global Citizenship initiatives'

· A student led group (Auckland Girls' Grammar School Humanitarian Activists) that meets regularly and is actively involved with NGOs and the community on humanitarian and human rights issues. Developing out of the school Amnesty International Group and Youth Against Sweat Shops it now incorporates ‘a broader range of issues that people around the world are facing'. Their focus in 2010 is poverty.


Human rights central to national curriculum according to Ministry (May 2010)

Last Updated (Wednesday, 14 May 2014 16:03)

New Zealand's education curricula for children - Te Whāriki, the New Zealand Curriculum and Te Marautanga o Aotearoa - have ‘both an explicit and implicit role in growing young people with a well-founded understanding of human rights', according to New Zealand's report on implementation of phase 1 of the UN World Programme for Human Rights Education.

The report, submitted by the Ministry of Education in April, stresses that

· ‘the curriculum that students experience includes all classroom learning as well as the policies and practices impacting on them beyond the classroom'

· human rights values underpin all three curriculum frameworks, and ‘respect for human rights is expected to be encouraged, modelled and explored'.

In discussions with Ministry officials, key Human Rights in Education partners have stressed the need to be more explicit in policy statements about New Zealand's commitment and obligation to ensure both ‘education for human rights' and ‘human rights in education' - as envisaged in the UN World Programme proclaimed in 2004 by the UN General Assembly.


‘The full development of the human personality’ (May 2010)

Last Updated (Tuesday, 30 November 1999 12:00)

One of our greatest challenges in education is our human rights obligation to work for ‘the development of the child's personality, talents and mental and physical abilities to their fullest potential'.

How do we avoid self-fulfilling prophecies based on flimsy assumptions about what a child is capable of? (See video on ‘teacher expectancy effects'/the ‘Rosenthal effect'/''Pygmalion effect' - and how about sharing this with students? The Wikipedia entry also covers the effect of student expectations of teachers)

Meeting our professional responsibility, Ken Robinson argues in his latest TEDtalk Bring on the Learning Revolution, means moving from an ‘industrialised model' of education (standardised schools) to an ‘organic model' (personalised learning)  to create ‘conditions where kids' natural talents can flourish'.

If you haven't already, see his much talked/emailed 2006 TEDtalk Schools Kill Creativity, and other Other TEDtalks on learning and education.

For a poignant reminder of the damage we can do, take a look at Education Week article I Was At-Risk, and I Remember What You Said

Bluestone School (Timaru) – partner in Human Rights in Education since January 2010 (May 2010)

Last Updated (Tuesday, 30 November 1999 12:00)

Here is a snippet of what has been happening at Bluestone School in Timaru and what some of the students are saying about human rights.

Notice in public areas:

At Bluestone School we recognise the importance of Human Rights.

Students are learning about rights and responsibilities. Understanding promotes good citizenship, support for each other, and a positive environment.

We are creating class agreements that highlight rights and the responsibilities that go with these. We are focusing on the difference between wants and needs. Human Rights are based on needs.

Human Rights in Education (HRiE) strengthens our values and develops our skills of thinking, managing self, relating to others, and participating & contributing.

What Year 5/6 (9-10 year olds) think/feel about human rights learning:

I never really knew about rights and responsibilities until this term.

I learned about how we got our rights.

I do not think it was fair when people were trying to change rights they got killed.

Sometimes it is hard to realise that we have a right but we have a responsibility too.

Lots of responsibilities come with one right.

I feel safe with the covenant of rights in the class.

I learnt a lot about the rights of children and adults.

We have rights!!


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